Pillsbury has Gluten-Free Products!

Realizing that gluten free does not mean carb free, I still keep my eyes out for products that might serve well on both dietary lists: the gluten free and the diabetic.

A few months ago I stumbled upon a gluten free product that actually managed to lower the carb count for some foods I adore. Pillsbury offers a line of gluten free doughs for cookies and pie crusts. They are in the refrigerated section of the grocery, near the other cookie, pastry, and biscuit offerings.

Pillsbury has been kind enough to share some recipes that make use of these products. I recently stumbled across one that sounds quite tasty, and I plan to try it out.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cups
Ingredients:
1 container Pillsbury TM Gluten Free refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough

24 miniature chocolate-covered peanut butter cup candies, preferably also gluten free, unwrapped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350F.

Place mini paper baking cups in each of 24 mini muffin cups. Spray paper baking cups with cooking spray.

Place 1 level measuring tablespoonful of cookie dough in each paper baking cup.

Bake 10-12 minutes or until dark golden brown. Immediately press one peanut butter candy into the center of each cookie cup.

Cool 10 minutes. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour.

Bon appetite!

–Ann Cathey

Amazeballs! Bakery – Galveston, Texas

10569105_881233748602311_3466077686341332385_nAmazeballs! Bakery out of Galveston, Texas, is a cottage industry offering handmade confections in the form of cake-balls, cake-pops, cookie truffles and brownie bonbons.
While there seem to be a gazillion flavor options offered by these ladies, I had the privilege of trying four recently.
Everything Nice (spice cake w/ cream cheese frosting)
The spice in this cake is fairly high, calmed by the coating to a delightful combination reminiscent of Gramma’s spice cake from an old European recipe. Nutmeg, cardamom and cinnamon are the predominant flavors that strike the palate in a smooth combination with the cream cheese frosting.

Duval Dreamin’ (key lime)
A lovely spring cake ball with a very delicate key lime flavor. It offers a good mix of textures between the candy coating and the the cake itself. Rather than being cloying, it leaves the palate more refreshed than many other types of confections. It is also available with a stronger key lime flavor, more like a key lime pie. Be sure to state your preference when ordering this one.

Chuck, Where’s My Blender? (non-alcoholic margarita)
This is a surprise of the tastebuds: cake that tastes like a lime margarita! It even has that mildly limey aftertaste that lingers on the back of your tongue. This bite of flavor is a little taste of summer from south of the border.

Rapture (maple blondie)
A blondie is a non-chocolate brownie, and this little ball has a true brownie texture with a striking maple flavor without being overpowering.

Check out the current flavor list and see what tickles your fancy. The folks at Amazeballs! Bakery will also work on suggested flavors for special orders.

Because all Amazeballs! Bakery products are made in a home kitchen they are not inspected by the Department of State Health Services or a local health department. The items reviewed herein contain the following allergens: EGGS, WHEAT, and MILK. Gluten free, sugar-free, wheat free, egg free, and milk free products are either already available or in development to accommodate special dietary requirements.

Pops and balls are available in minimum orders of 1/2 dozen, including stickless, bouquets, and trays for birthday parties, holidays, baby showers, corporate parties or any other event you may require. Be advised that because this business
is a cottage industry, payment must be made at the bakery’s home location.

For more information, feel free to drop by their website or contact them via FaceBook.

— Ann Cathey

Food Porn 4

As has been previously noted, writing about food can work up a great appetite, but looking at food can make your stomach complain that you are not paying it any attention.

This time around, we are taking a peek into my daughter’s kitchen, and my own. My daughter has a lovely home garden that is sometimes restricted to a side porch, but more often spills out into her back yard.

Home Grown Mint

Home Grown Mint

Baked Cheesecake

Baked Cheesecake

Scratch made cookie dough

Scratch made cookie dough

Creamy Chicken Casserole with Biscuit Crust

Creamy Chicken Casserole with Biscuit Crust

Creamy Chicken Casserole emplated

Creamy Chicken Casserole emplated

Quiche with roasted carrots and asparagus

Quiche with roasted carrots and asparagus

— Ann Cathey

Celestial Seasonings Holiday Teas

This Holiday Season, I feel the need to plug some of my favorite tea blends. Celestial Seasonings may not be the highest end tea, but it offers very pleasing offerings at a modest price.

Available in most grocery stores (even if the selection is limited), it has become a favorite tea company of mine. I believe that all of the Celstial Seasonings products contain all-natural ingredients and flavors, and no artificial colors or preservatives. This makes them very friendly to folks with restricted diets who are keeing Kosher, require gluten-free alternatives, and who are diabetic.

I can’t describe these lovely seasonal blends any better than the Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster, so I will just borrow his words from their website.

Candy Cane Lane
“This delectable holiday blend starts with naturally decaffeinated green tea and adds unmistakable seasonal flavors like cool peppermint, creamy vanilla and a dash of cinnamon. Candy canes have been cherished symbols of holiday spirit for centuries, and Candy Cane Lane® is sure to become a festive and healthy tradition at your celebrations!”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

Gingerbread Spice
“Stepping into a cozy kitchen warmed by the spicy aroma of freshly baked gingerbread — what a wonderful way to thaw a frosty winter chill! This handcrafted blend is a nostalgic medley of ginger, cinnamon and other time-honored ingredients. Because it’s naturally caffeine free, you can indulge in this unmistakably merry tea any time!”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

Nutcracker Sweet
“Nutcracker Sweet is an irresistibly simple blend of fine black teas made more festive with creamy, nutty vanilla and just a pinch of cinnamon. A decadent-yet-healthy treat, this delightful tea captures the magic of the world’s favorite ballet, The Nutcracker, which has been synonymous with holiday cheer for more than 100 years.”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride
“This cheerful holiday blend will warm your heart with the inviting aroma and delightfully simple taste of freshly baked sugar cookies straight from the oven. Like all of our teas, Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride has no refined sweeteners or added sugars — giving you a guilt-free way to partake freely in the pleasures of the season.”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

Sugar Plum Spice
“This celebratory blend combines juicy purple plums and aromatic spices like ginger and cardamom with tart hibiscus, floral chamomile and just a hint of sweetness. Every sip is a journey to the Land of the Sweets in Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, where the beautiful Sugar Plum Fairy presides over a flavorful assortment of sensory delights.”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

Sweet Harvest Pumpkin
“Just like big piles of pumpkins at roadside stands and perfectly baked pumpkin pies on kitchen tables, Sweet Harvest Pumpkin™ Holiday Black Tea in tea cups everywhere is a sure sign that the holidays are near. Featuring rich black tea, harvest-fresh pumpkin flavor and traditional spices like cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg plus a touch of natural sweetness, this festive blend is a delicious little slice of the season.”
—Charlie Baden, Celestial Seasonings Blendmaster

The “no strings attached” tea bags are natural fiber with no extra stings, staples or wrappers. This means that you have to close the wax paper bags inside the box properly to keep out moisture, but that’s a small price to pay for a lowered environmental impact. Learn more about Celestial Seasonings sustainability here.

Whatever tea you choose to drink and share this holiday season, enjoy it!

 

— Ann Cathey